Feds Will Begin Collecting Data On Police Use Of Force On Civilians
The U.S. Department of Justice has announced plans to track police-involved shootings, deaths while in custody and other use of force incidents across the country.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch Friday revealed the new steps the department would take to better track police interactions with the public and create more transparency.
They include making both states and federal law enforcement comply with new rules requiring them to report civilian deaths in police custody, as well as a program where nearly 130 participating police departments agreed to release info on stops and searches, officer-involved shootings and other police actions. It’ll also launch a pilot data collection program early next year that will include use of force info from federal agencies like the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Marshals.
“Accurate and comprehensive data on the use of force by law enforcement is essential to an informed and productive discussion about community-police relations,” Lynch said in a statement. “The initiatives we are announcing today are vital efforts toward increasing transparency and building trust between law enforcement and the communities we serve.”
Congress had already passed a law requiring all states to report the number of people who die while in police custody, but there wasn’t a policy in place to track police-involved violence that didn’t result in death.
The move stems from President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing, which called on cops to record and report fatal and non-fatal police shootings and deaths while in custody.